The Mindset

I’m back to the office again after months of work from home. One thing (probably the only thing) i like more from WFO is the ability to talk with my colleagues in between meetings and during lunch. One of my colleagues had just finished her maternity leave so we often talk about motherhood. We once came to talk about the postpartum moment, where most of the hard things occured. New mom plus newborn is a chaos, without a solid support system – which I’m glad i had.

Long story short – hearing all our stories, another colleague just can’t imagine having a baby. To be exact, she’s not quite sure if she can handle all the hassles. But we kind of tell her that once God already decided to put a baby in her womb, it means she is ready – she will be ready eventually. You just don’t know where the strength came from. It just happened (well, with some preps and prayers of course).

It is that mindset that i would like to highlight. Not just when it comes to motherhood, but also when any kind of challenges, opportunities, or hardships face us. The mindset that a force greater than us is in control of whatever happens and by holding on to that force, we can go through every moments in life. Not necessarily perfect, but we survived. Gracefully, hopefully.

Amazingly, i found this case works in everyone -regardless of their religion- as long as they believe in God. Life becomes easier. The heart is at peace. Peace and calmness solves 50% burden of our problem. So it helps, a lot. In Islamic perspective, peace and calmness are reached by remembering Allah, continuosly. So that’s the mindset I’m trying to build within me. In every occasion, remember Allah, and remember He is capable of all and He is in control.

So, what’s there to be worried of?

Well it’s not that easy though. We’re human so we will still be worry about this and that. But at least 50% of it has been covered.

I hope we all find our peace of mind.

❤ Atiqah Zulfa Nadia

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What happened to you?

Baru banget baca sebuah thread di Twitter, yang kontennya diambil dari Instagram seorang influencer. Di konten tersebut terlihat mbak influencer mengutarakan kesedihannya karena berulang kali dapat komentar super pedas dari netizen. Dia merujuk pada sebuah post tentang menjadi seorang ibu, di mana komentar netizen banyak yang menganggap dia lebay dan seakan ngga berempati terhadap apa yang dirasakan mbak influencer.

Terlepas dari segala faktor hormonal ibu dan betapa memang beberapa momen adalah perjuangan yang besar, aku lebih mau membahas para netizen yang suka komentar pedas di akun orang lain. Like, what happened to you?

Setahun ke belakang aku sempat membuat akun Instagram-ku jadi public. Niat awalnya supaya kalau share sesuatu bisa lebih luas impact-nya. Di masa itu, aku cukup hati-hati banget kalau ngepost. Terutama hal yang sifatnya personal. Foto anak, konten yang mengandung informasi diri, konten yang pakai tag lokasi, itu bener-bener dipikirin supaya ngga banyak data pribadi yang tersebar. Imagine strangers knowing all what you do and all your life story? Sebagai introvert tentunya ngga nyaman. Aku memang ngga siap jadi influencer yang sharing all the bits and pieces of life hehehe.

Lalu ada satu kejadian yang bikin aku bergerak mantap untuk menjadikan akunku private lagi. Suatu hari aku post sebuah konten, niatnya untuk nunjukin what I did to manage my expense. Kontennya udah dibuat sedemikian kecil dan buram. Kemudian ada orang asing, yang aku ngga kenal siapa and I bet she doesn’t know me too, yang komentar di DM. Komentarnya cukup pedas. And honestly, it took me several days to be okay with it (padahal DMnya langsung kuhapus saat itu juga – tapi otak kan ngga langsung lupa yaa). I did what I had to do to cope with the situation and after some days, akhirnya bisa bener-bener melupakan kejadian itu.

Sejak itu jadi paham kalau wajar aja jika influencer banyak yang mengalami disturbance dalam hidupnya. Apalagi kalau terekspos dengan komentar pedas nan jahat dari netizen. Ada yang bilang itu konsekuensi dari menjadikan hidup sebagai konsumsi masyarakat luas. Partially agree. Dan belum menjelaskan fenomena kenapa orang asing (netizen) punya drive untuk memberikan komentar julidnya? Aku pribadi sering merasa ‘cringe banget oy’ ketika melihat sebuah konten, tapi I don’t think it’s necessary to tell it to the person. Apalagi aku ngga kenal secara personal.

So what happened to you? Apa sih yang bikin banyak netizen sampai memutuskan untuk ngetik komentar dan klik tombol send? Apakah itu membuat dirinya kelihatan lebih baik dari orang-orang lain? Atau memang dasarnya dia merasa lebih baik dari mbak influencer? Atau ini ada pengaruh dari rasa iri? Atau jangan-jangan iseng semata?

Bener-bener penasaran sih sama latar belakang psikologi atau basic human behavior-nya. Di buku Contagion, ada satu istilah namanya social currency. Di mana sesorang inginnya selalu terlihat lebih baik, dibandingkan orang lain. Sehingga value social currency-nya lebih tinggi. Ada banyak hal yang bikin social currency ini terkesan naik: knowing what other’s don’t, be the first to try something, dan lain-lain. Tapi aku ngga yakin juga ini menjelaskan fenomena tadi sih.

Masih menerka-nerka, what drives those people to post such hateful and unnecessary comment? And how do they feel after posting it?

❤️ Atiqah Zulfa Nadia

Mainnya Kurang Jauh

Semenjak beberapa bulan yang lalu pindah ke kontrakan, karena rumah sedang direnovasi, jadi semakin terbuka akan realita kehidupan. Mungkin selama ini ternyata mainnya kurang jauh. Atau hidupnya terlalu nyaman, dikelilingi dengan lingkungan yang nyaman juga. Jujur banyak hal yang bikin tergelitik, banyak juga yang ‘concerning’, kadang meninggalkan pertanyaan what can I do to help – tapi cuma sebatas tanya karena tentu butuh effort yang besar kalau mau beresin dari akar permasalahannya (yang mana sejak kuliah dan di pekerjaan, selalu harus menyelesaikan akar masalahnya).

Kontrakanku letaknya masih di Jakarta Selatan, kita semua paham ya, antara komplek mewah dengan perkampungan kalau di Jakarta bisa sebelah-sebelahan. Jadi meski di Jaksel yang sering dielukan warga, wilayah ini bronx banget. It was a huge struggle for me to move in.

Meskipun rumahnya spacious dan ditata supaya bisa nyaman oleh orang tuaku, tapi jarak dari satu rumah ke rumah lain cukup dekat. Jadi aku bisa dengar dengan jelas percakapan warga sekitar yang lagi ‘nenangga’. Tangisan dan teriakan bocah-bocah juga bisa kedengeran jelas dari dalam rumah. Sejak dulu ngga pernah tinggal di pemukiman macem gini. Seolah-olah rumahnya kedap suara dan warganya juga sibuk dengan kegiatan masing-masing. Tetangga tapi jarang-jarang kelihatan. Nah dari bisa mendengar suara-suara di luar ini lah muncul banyak concern di kepala.

Ada tetangga dengan beberapa anak, anaknya ada yang masih kecil tapi ada juga yang sudah berkeluarga. Mereka tinggal di bangunan yang sama, entah berapa luasnya. Ngga kebayang gimana pack-nya di dalam sana, gimana gerahnya, dan gimana mereka bisa cope with each other tanpa punya banyak ruang privasi.

Anaknya yang kecil-kecil masih sekolah, dan ngga kebayang pasti sekolah online menjadi berat untuk mereka. Dari mulai harus sedia gadget, beli paket internet, sampai membuat suasana belajar yang kondusif. Anak bungsunya sering banget menangis, kadang karena hal yang menurutku sepele: mau jajan. Tapi mungkin ngga sepele untuk keluarga itu. Jajan seribu dua ribu ngga murah. Lalu bapaknya akan mulai teriak dan marah kalau anaknya terlalu rewel, ngga bisa dibilangin. Setiap beliau marah-marah, aku bisa dengar dengan jelas.

Si anak juga beberapa kali buang air kecil di depan pagar rumah, atau lari-lari di jalanan sambil telanjang. Jujur shock juga melihat kayak gini. Semoga Hannah ngga pernah lihat pas dia lagi berbuat yang kurang baik. Semoga juga Hannah ngga perlu lama-lama besar di lingkungan seperti ini. Bukannya pilih-pilih, tapi memang harus membuat lingkungan anak sebaik mungkin kan?

Aku pun bukan nyalahin orang tua dari anak tadi, tapi kondisi mereka juga membentuk keluarganya jadi seperti itu. Mungkin boro-boro mikirin bagaimana cara parenting yang baik, mereka masih sibuk mengurus basic needs-nya dan setiap hari adalah struggle tersendiri untuk mereka. Who knows. Apa yang aku lihat pasti sudah bentuk akumulasi dari banyak hal. Hidup kan banyak tiny bits and pieces-nya.

Kadang mencoba memahami dan memaklumi, walaupun kadang spaneng juga. Tapi yang jelas aku sadar, point of view-ku jadi lebih luas semenjak melihat fenomena-fenomena di lingkungan sini. Entah gimana caranya, aku berharap hal-hal kayak gini bisa membaik. Kayak sila ke-5, walaupun kayaknya terlalu naif ya? Makanya pusing juga kalau berusaha cari solusi.

Yaaa, semoga pengalaman di sini bisa membuatku menjalani hidup dengan lebih baik, memandang segala sesuatu dengan lebih luas, ngga egois, dan apa segala pilihan yang kubuat di hidup bisa berkontribusi ke sekitar – apapun bentuknya. Dulu mungkin aku hanya dengar, tapi dengan melihat sendiri, experience sendiri, it hits me differently. Dulu mungkin mainnya memang kurang jauh…

❤️ Atiqah Zulfa Nadia

Pure Intention

Setelah mengukur dan menimbang, lalu akhirnya memutuskan dengan cepat setelah nonton kajiannya Yaqeen (my fav! Bagi yang muslim, silakan coba cek social media-nya. Siapa tau cocok juga), tema tahun ini adalah pure intention. Selain pure, tentu intention-nya juga harus baik ya. Karena yang namanya amal, dinilainya dari niatnya.

Sejujurnya di akhir tahun 2021 kemarin ada yang bikin aku ‘tersentil’ sih. Seumur-umur punya Instagram, aku selalu prefer untuk bikin akunnya private. Creepy aja ngebayangin orang asing di luar sana bisa lihat aktivitasku yang aku post di story. Tapi di tahun 2020 kemarin aku mencoba untuk go public. Niatnya supaya kalau ngepost tentang kehamilan, anak, dan lain-lain, bisa lebih banyak orang yang baca. Mana tau jadi amal jariyah ya kan..

The downside of making my account public, yaa post yang iseng dan personal pun jadi ikutan bisa diakses banyak orang. I don’t really maintain my close friend’s list dan jarang juga gunain fitur share to close friend only (i know, my bad). Nah ceritanya, aku sempat ngepost sesuatu tanpa niat gimana-gimana, simply sharing about things that currently occupied me. Ternyata ada yang DM request dari seorang tak dikenal (turns out dia follow aku, tapi aku ngga kenal dia siapa.. seems like netizen aja).

Intinya niatku apa, tapi dia nangkepnya berbeda dan negatif. Regardless cara penyampaian dia yang nyelekit dan sok tau banget layaknya netizen +62, sebetulnya aku lebih jadi introspeksi juga sih. Bahwa niat kita belum tentu tersampaikan dengan baik ke orang. Terutama buat mereka yang ngga kenal kita dan ngga tau kita aslinya gimana, mudah banget untuk menafsirkan apa yang kita share di social media secara ngga tepat. Ya selain aku juga heran sih, kok dia peduli amat??

Jujur sejak kejadian itu jadi balikin ke akun private, karena creepy. Some strangers peeking on my instastory and go into that detail… Dan sejak kejadian itu pula semakin berpikir beberapa kali sebelum ngepost sesuatu – sebelum bales chat WA pun juga jadi suka hesitate. Perlu banget nanggepin ngga, kata-katanya udah oke atau belum, dan lain-lain.

Di sisi lain, masih tetep pengen banget sharing hal-hal yang insya Allah bermanfaat lewat social media. Ya mudah-mudahan efeknya tetep bisa berlipat ganda walaupun kontennya jadi eksklusif (duile).

Anyway intinya dari tulisan ini, sebenernya even when we have a pure and kind intention, other people might still get the wrong perception. Apalagi kalau niatnya ngga tepat? Bersyukur juga bahwa Allah menilai amal kita dari niat kita, bukan dari persepsi orang lain.

❤️ Atiqah Zulfa Nadia

Living for more than just I

27 years, eh? To be honest I don’t quite remember every details of my life. Perhaps most of the story has been forgotten. Yet there are some specific moments I could still recall, both good and bad ones. And I thank God for giving me the luxury to not take that as burdens to live. I carry them all merely as memories. The past is indeed aa part of me but it doesn’t have to determine who I am or who I would become.

A glimpse of my life in the past: for me, life was about  self-fulfillment. This year is different, though. Expecting a baby and the pandemic has shifted how I perceive life and achievements. I probably have had enough of self achievements – those which have very little to do with other people. Ticking the bucket list, reaching goals, etc. It’s not that I won’t grow anymore, my life is still way too far away from the word settling down. It’s more like, whatever I achieve for myself later in this life has to create a ripple for others; my children, my family, my friends, and people around me.

This world is so big and so full that it is too shallow to think that life is all about myself. I am so insignificant alone. Thus, it has to be more than just me. What I achieve should creates benefit, impact to other people. Not matter how small, even just a second of smile or a flash of hope.

This one brief notes is my pledge – I hope I will never forget. You might agree with me, you might not. And I don’t force my point of view to be appreciated by everyone. I just hope you guys have a good read this Sunday.. 🙂

❤️ Atiqah Zulfa Nadia

The World that Doesn’t Revolve Around Us

This morning I contemplated as I read through my Twitter timeline. The heated topic was our minister of education who is said to be surprised by the inequality in the country, especially in terms of infrastructure and education. I don’t know whether the media framed him to be that surprised or he truly is that innocent. I tweeted, did he really just knew that not all regions in Indonesia has 24 hours electricity a day?

Many people correlated the minister being ignorant to the fact that he has spent his education overseas. I do not agree. It might be a factor, but it shouldn’t be. I have told my opinion through Twitter but I guess I want to talk about it a little deeper, thus I write this post. I won’t talk about the minister in person, I’m more interested in the context: we often forget or even unaware of the existence of the world that does not revolve around us.

It is a very big world out there and our life is just a small part, we collide with some other’s life sometimes and there are parts that we can never touch. Either it is too far or too irrelevant. I think it must be a component of education, how we must at least understand that those untouchable parts exist. Even better if we can interact with them. There, we build a sense of empathy.

We can live in the capital city and able to see the problem people in rural area is facing. We can be so educated and understand the way people who do not go to school think. We can be the socialite and know the struggle of the poor. The heart and the mind needs to be left open to things that are beyond our daily life.

My mother always teach me that a child, though lives comfortably, has to learn to strive too. No matter how much we put an effort to build a comfortable life for our kids, we must not forget that they have to understand the reality of life – there are other worlds that do not evolve around them. Long time ago I read a blog post from Adhitya Mulya (it’s an old post, I can’t seem to find it now) and what he said really stick to my head. Shortly, let the children understand both comfort and discomfort. For instance, we provide them with car and teach them to ride a public transportation, too. Make them understand that comfort and luxury is not compulsory but a choice. They can choose to take the uncomfortable path once in a while or often and there they will learn empathy. They can touch the part that is far from their everyday life and it opens their view of this world.

Ahh, I know the world that does not revolve around us includes those who are above the sky. It would be nice, too, to touch it once in a while 🙂

Love, Atiqah Zulfa Nadia

A Ramadan Like No Other

I tend to think a lot every time I commute from Mampang to Cibubur (I do it once every week during weekend). Perhaps because I stay inside the house for too long. Or maybe because I see a lot of people on the street. A lot of people who hold various kind of stories in this time of corona – who are currently struggling more than they have ever before.

It’s the month of Ramadan. The one that feels like no other. The one that is different for everybody all over the world. There’s no tarawih prayer in the mosque. The takjil market might still be open but obviously it won’t be as crowded as the previous years. I’tikaf will be done inside the house. No bukber or sahur on the road this time around. This is Ramadan in pandemic.

The vibe is somewhat strange. It used to be a festive season, full of joy and togetherness. To me, it was 30 magical days, which then completed by the eid day – which should be even more joyful. But this year the eid must be different too, i suppose. The pandemic is not likely to finish yet.

I really hope next year things will already be back to normal. But since we’re all here now, let’s just make the best out of it. It’s the moment with loads of opportunities to give charity because many people need it, to do silaturahim to as many people as possible virtually, to allocate money we used to spend for new clothes or home decor to the greater goods, and of to have more time on our own to reflect and get closer to The Almighty.

As we’re in a month of abundant blessings, let’s pray that the world heals, we get through this, and the new normal turns us to a better person.

Happy fasting, Ramadan mubarak!

❤️, Atiqah Zulfa Nadia

Slow Paced Jakarta

I have been living in Jakarta for so many years now. The city has always been vibrant, packed, and fast paced. Everyday is a battle  for the citizens. Some has better fortune than the others, yet both surely are trying to make a living.


There are expats, executives, sellers, blue collars workers, housewives, and many other occupations in the city to run the economy. The weather might get worse some of the days but no one stops. From sunrise to late night, people roam around.


You can see the road is never empty except during holiday season. People will go out from Jakarta to get their mind, body, and soul refreshed. A getaway from the exhausting routine, some said. I told you the city is like a battlefield and to be out from here is to rest. To pause. To enjoy the victory.


Ah, but it’s different today. It’s different since weeks ago. The city is forced to slow down. Most people have to stay at home. The movement is limited. No large party interaction is allowed. Daily life in Jakarta has changed. I see the road today and it is so silent. It’s not like the city we used to live in.


It saddened me. As we all realize since the beginning, this policy will not benefit many. Those with daily jobs might lose their income. It will be a very hard time for them. Even harder because no one knows when this will end. On the other hand, this policy is needed to enable this situation to end sooner than later.


I wish God shows His justice to ensure those in need get the necessary donation from the government or philanthropists. I hope they live okay and healthy. I pray for the situation to get better. God please, help us all through this time, please bless us with your Rahman and Rahim. Please safe and guide us.


Living this new normal is not easy for everyone. Yet some of us live more comfortable than the others. For us with more power, take a look around, see if someone needs help and offer help. If there’s anything we can do, even the slightest thing, to help all of us recover, do it. The right time is now. We’re all in this together and we shall go hand in hand to get through this.


Jakarta might be slower today, but it’s not weak. We will recover.

❤️, Atiqah Zulfa Nadia

On Leaving the Job You (partly) Love

Whoa it’s been a long time since my last post (last year, i guess?). It apparently took a big milestone in life to finally write again. And this part right here is dedicated to my fellow office mates.

Three years ain’t too short, I suppose, to make the decision to leave. I joined the company through a graduate program. Over the time, I learned a lot. The most valuable thing that I learned during my first year is about dealing with people and the work itself, how to structure our thinking every time there is an issue. How we have to clearly understand the whole story, make rooms for possible causes and impacts, analyze the case, and remain calm. I observed how my manager win people and I basically copied what she did over time. The achievement of the year was to gain trust from people I worked with, that I’m capable and I can even do more.

I got a great role model and a job that I love. Exactly on that year, I was thinking of building my career in the company.

Then things change in the second year. My teammates left, my manager left, so I was alone. I got a new manager – but it’s different. Even the organization structure changed. I once felt like sailing alone on the sea with no clear direction and sometimes the storm came. The good news is, I survived. Partly because the lessons I have learned during my first year and partly because I still love my job and partly because I have built a great friendship with my colleagues. Susah senang sama-sama is probably the most suitable phrase. I laughed a lot, even with all the struggles.

It was some sort of a good balance between everything – an ok job, an ok manager, and a good friendship. It was a little bit boring though, an ok job somehow does not spark me joy. But it was comfortable. The common sense told me not to have the intention to leave.

Here comes the third year, where the balance went off. I got great friends. The manager changed (again) and this time was different. No personal issue but I did not feel the ‘click’ with her. We had a very different way of working and solving problems. The ok job had become very mediocre. I often fed up by how often the same issue happened over and over again. And like most people do, I wanted something more. However, I was going nowhere further. Yet the most important thing I finally realized, during this year, was how the company operates is actually bothering me. It does not necessarily bad but it clearly does not suit my value. I believe that a vision of a company and how it is directed really influence the behavior of the employee. I don’t want to be there if things don’t change. Since then, with the combination of all thoughts and feelings, I wanted to leave.

To trace back, the first thought came in the first quarter of 2019. I have started looking for new opportunities ever since. I did interviews with several companies but there were no ‘yes’ answer from them. When I finally slowed down early this year, I got the good news. Good and unexpected, honestly. It’s funny how sometimes God answers our prayer in the most unexpected time. The lesson is don’t lose hope, guys.

This is my own story. I did not say that everyone in the company has the same experience and feeling. Fate has different stories to tell each person. So please don’t compare mine with yours (or them). To me, for now, the better place is out there (and who knows if I will ever come back?). To emphasize my reason to leave the company, it’s because in the end, I need the good little balance between everything. For the sake of my whole career, great friendship alone is not enough. I’m not (yet) settling down, not like this. I still want to move forward and push myself through.

Quick message on leaving a job, everyone has their own personal reason. So if one day you feel like you really need to go, be courageous to explore what’s out there. And don’t ever lose hope. When God knows it’s time for you to have new adventures, He will help you out. If leaving has never come across your mind, that’s totally fine. It means you already got what you want. And what you want is up to you. What’s important is that we always choose the option which serves ourselves best.

Adios, with lots of love..

Atiqah Zulfa Nadia

Work-Life (Not) Balance

I used to believe in work-life balance. Years ago, it was one of the question I asked during an interview, “how’s the work-life balance in this company?” Turns out, it’s not the company that defines the work-life balance. It’s actually mine to choose.

Just several weeks ago I realized that there’s actually no such thing as a perfect balance between work and life. I now believe that we have to choose, to which degree do we want to excel in career, to contribute to the society, to socialize with friends, to manage the household and family, and of course to have a perfect me-time for ourselves. It all can happen in parallel, all at once, but the degree will vary. It depends on the priority of each person and the priority might change over time. Easy example, the level of priority before I got married was 30% career, 10% society, 20% friends, 30% family, and 10% me. Now the combination has changed: 25% career, 10% society, 10% friends, 35% family, and 20% me. I bet this will change again later when I have kids. However, there’s no good or bad combination that applies to all – it’s all relative. The parameter itself might be different from one person to another. I got 5, maybe other people have 8 or 3. Thus, no one should underestimate other people based on their chosen priority level (a full-time housewife thinks she’s better than a career woman or the other way around).

How do I come to this conclusion? First, I read Sheryl Sandberg’s Lean In and she said so. Second, I listened to the lecture from two directors in the company I work at. The first director used the term work-life balance, but she did not mention if she had one. She explained that she tries to make a quality time with her family amidst her busy career and organization life. Often she took her children to company or organization events – just to be able to spend time with them. The second director even said that he’s not the one to give advice regarding work-life balance, he’s just trying to look for the fun in everything he does. The similarity between them is that they have high priority level in career. Thus they try to squeeze in other things with the resources that left. The first director turned down a job that requires her to be out of town because she wants to be close to her family. Her priority level for family could be the second highest. She definitely does it all, in a combination of priority level that she believes is best for her.

What is more interesting is the statement of the second director, which I can’t seem to remember. But that very statement makes me realize, it is actually unfair to seek for a work-life balance, while work itself is actually a part of our life. How could we separate work from life, as if work is the bad guy and life is the good one. I don’t know how it’s like in other industry (like consulting or media or advertising that is famous for the stressful work culture), but to me, work is both sucks and fun. There are times where it gets really stressful and tiring. I hold a different value from the company. However, it drills my brain so it doesn’t stop thinking and learning. I have great friends at work, so it’s fun. To the extent of my current priority level combination, I’m good.

To realize that work-life balance is not about the work itself, I have never asked for it during an interview. I am more keen on knowing the value that the company has or its culture. And to realize that there’s no perfect balance of everything in life, I take things more lightly. Juggling all the little things in life is indeed a challenge, but stay calm and serene does help.

I hope with this new mindset, I can always embrace this life with excited feelings, on and on and on. (I hope you, too)

Love, Atiqah Zulfa Nadia